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Richard

HollowBookCo.

Astoria, NY

[Image]
Personal Story

I grew up in New York and was influenced by Brooklyn street culture: by graffiti art, skateboarding, and music sub-culture as a young kid.

I later moved to Atlanta, Georgia where I began promoting my own electronic music events at age 19 - my first turn as an entrepreneur. Through this, I made enough money to afford my first Apple computer, which led me to switch career gears to follow my love and passion for design.

I moved back to New York to work during the Internet boom, only to quickly experience a catastrophic time: the Internet boom turned into a popped bubble, a financial crash followed. At the same time, the towers of the World Trade Center, once visible across the street, also fell before my very eyes, and I only just escaped the crashing of the first tower.

Right after, I struggled as a video scratcher pioneering an art of mixing video for live events, managing to get featured in some noteworthy magazines but finally made the call to go back to school to get a formal design education. I received a degree from Fashion Institute of Technology, and attended The School of Visual Arts to further my design education in Interaction. Together - my background and my training - combined to form my current creative focus: creating products of innovation that fuse art and technology, while focusing on our environment.

I currently sell these products on ETSY (https://www.etsy.com/shop/hollowbookco).

Business Description

We create products. HollowBookCo repurposes books inspiring others in reading and leaving a positive footprint in our environment! We are craftsmen hand carving hollow book safes, and designing flasks for some books to hide them. Our books maintain a high quality and come with a magnetic enclosure. Our focus is to constantly improve the experience for our customers by creating new features that they will love.

We benefit the environment, by recycling and repurposing used books to create our product line of hollow books. Currently we treat our information as if it was meant to be disposable. Unfortunately this leaves us with landfills of more garbage spending unnecessary resources as the life of a book ends. But we give books a new purpose.

We first opened our Etsy shop in 2011 and our customers love our books. Many have come back again and again, and they make us doubly proud and happy when they tell us how much their friends and family loved our HollowBooks as gifts.

Our HollowBooks are beautifully hand-crafted, befitting the very special people and occasions with something meaningful. They have become a great way to mark a special time in our customers lives. Our customers come from all sorts of walks, young and old, with 60% of them women who either buy Hollow Books for their own personal keepsakes but have transcended towards giving to people they love and care for. Currently we are also very proud to have launched a creative library of flasks. Ironically has become a symbol of what has inspired other writers such as Hemingway and Fitzgerald.

What is the purpose of this loan?

This loan will be used to purchase equipment that would allow us to prototype and manufacture other new products and integrate new features into our current line of products. This will supplement our current income by increasing more sales with a larger product line. The impact on our company will allow us to be a greater company focused on creating better product designs. We hope this will open up new doors for opportunity into a brand new world of creating products for not only our lives, but the lives of everyone who will benefit from using our products.

Richard's loan is endorsed by Malachi Records. The information below explains why his trustee thinks Richard is a great candidate for a Kiva Zip loan.
How long have you known this person?

More than 5 years

Tell us about your relationship with this borrower.

We have worked with Richard many times in the past on creative and visual products. As a designer, he has helped us produce materials that helped us build Malachi Records. We may often contact Richard with many ideas, working together whenever possible. He has worked with us for many years and feel fortunate to collaborate when the chance arises.

Tell us about this borrower's personality and character, and why you are endorsing him or her for a Kiva Zip loan.

Richard Lau is a smart, trustworthy, honest, hard-working artist and designer who is very talented at what he does. Richard is both technologically oriented as well as a visually creative person. He is also very passionate and focused on achieving many creative endeavors with a innovative forward thinking mindset for both design and an entrepreneur.

Tell us about this borrower's business, and why you believe a Kiva Zip loan will contribute to his or her success.

Richard's work is the heart and soul of his business. He constantly is improving his craftsmanship which may entail needing tools, support, and money in order to bring his ideas into reality. Since his work is often his life, being able to improve these aspects by overcoming financial barriers. The challenges he faces is bringing his ideas to market. Since Richard has established such channels online with great products, we would expect that he could easily overcome these challenges.

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PAYING BACK

A loan of $5,000 helps me to Purchase equipment to expand our product services, and speed up production.

Disbursed Nov 8, 2013
Repayment Term:
24 monthly payments
Grace Period:
6 months
Listed:
Aug 13, 2013
Disbursed:
Nov 8, 2013
Paying Back:
Nov 8, 2013

About HollowBookCo.

Industry:
Arts / Crafts
Years in Operation:
New Business
Website:
hollowbook.co
Follow:
Facebook Twitter Linkedin Etsy
Badges:
Badge_connectedness_silver_small

What are Borrower Badges?

Borrower Badges are a system designed to recognize and reward borrowers’ engagement with the Kiva Zip website.

There are two types of badges that are tiered like medals: Gold, Silver and Bronze.

  1. 'Repayment badges' are awarded for the on-time repayment of loans.
  2. 'Connectedness badges' are awarded for engagement with the Kiva Zip website.

This loan is endorsed by

Trustee Type:
Hybrid
Location:
New York City, NY
Badges:
None
On Zip Since:
Aug 13, 2013
(8 months)
Loans Endorsed:
1
Total Value:
$5,000
Fundraising/Raised:
0
Paying on Time:
Not enough data
Paying Back Late:
Not enough data
Repaid in Full:
0
Defaulted:
0
Repayment Rate:
Not enough data
Why are you endorsing Richard?

Richard Lau is a smart, trustworthy, honest, hard-working artist and designer who is very talented at what he does. Richard is both technologically oriented as well as a visually creative person. He is also very passionate and focused on achieving many creative endeavors with a innovative forward...

What are Trustee Badges?

Trustee Badges are a system designed to recognize and reward trustees’ engagement with the Kiva Zip website.

There are two types of badges that are tiered like medals: Gold, Silver and Bronze.

  1. 'Repayment badges' are awarded for the on-time repayment of loans.
  2. 'Connectedness badges' are awarded for engagement with the Kiva Zip website.
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